At Longsands Academy, we believe that students are entitled to be immersed in ‘the best that has been thought and said’, which is best achieved through a broad and balanced, knowledge-rich curriculum. We are building a seven-year revision strategy that supports students to remember the core and powerful knowledge that is required to be successful in each subject.
The Ebbinghaus Forgetting Curve demonstrates that knowledge is lost over time if it is not revisited. A simple model for memory involves working memory and long-term memory; working memory is limited, and can very easily become overloaded, whereas long-term memory is effectively limitless. The limited working memory can be supported by storing key facts and processes in the long-term memory. Research evidence indicates that regular recall activities, known as retrieval practice, are an effective way of ensuring that knowledge is committed to long-term memory.
At the start of the academic year, students in Years 7, 8 and 9 will receive a knowledge organiser booklet that contains content for all subject areas, including facts, dates, characters, quotes, precise definitions, and important vocabulary. Students will use these knowledge organisers in lessons, in tutor time, and during homework tasks. An important aspect of students’ revision for mid- and end-of-year examinations will be to use the knowledge organisers for self-quizzing. If this core knowledge is secured, students will be in a strong position to use and apply this knowledge in a range of contexts.
Knowledge organisers have their limitations. It is not possible to include absolutely everything students need to know in a booklet like this. In addition to self-quizzing from these knowledge organisers, students will need to use a range of other revision strategies to support their learning, such as practising longer questions and solving problems.
The best way to use these knowledge organisers is to follow this simple guidance:
- Look at a specific aspect of the knowledge organiser
- Cover up the information
- Write out the information from memory
- Check and correct any errors, missing information or spelling mistakes